The Goal Show – demonstrating the best pundits are not ex-pros

JAMES Richardson is a likeable fellow, those that remember his ground-breaking Football Italia back in the 1990s will recall how. We warmed to his blokey, knowledgable persona and his love of decent coffee.  BT Sport pulled off a coup in getting the [surprisingly] diminutive Richardson, now equipped with middle-aged beard, to host their Champions League […]

Sunderland: The revealing footage that makes you wince

I WAS relatively late to the excellent series, Sunderland ‘Til I Die, largely because I am naturally cynical about carefully-scripted documentaries that supposedly tell the inside story of a club or institution. However, having watched the entire two-series offering, I not only feel I know Sunderland a little better, but the revealing content confirmed conventional […]

Football’s almost home, but the family is still dysfunctional

IT’S HARD to get too excited about the resumption of big time football. Unless you are a die-hard fan of the participating clubs, watching a game that has all the ambience of a pre-match kick around (Arsenal’s Leno may disagree), really is unappetising. Of course, we know why they are taking place, to satisfy the […]

Football Read Review: The Club – a book that had to be written

THERE’S A LOT of very fine football books in circulation at present, ranging from the fairly disposable “fan lit” to books about some of the trends impacting the game, such as data, tactics, finance and culture. The Club, by Joshua Robinson and Jonathan Clegg, explains how the Premier League rose to become the most disruptive […]

Farewell Albert Sewell, the man who invented the classic programme

HOW sad to hear of the passing of Albert Sewell, Chelsea fan, programme guru, statistician and, above all, a genuine football fan. Albert Sewell, in the late 1940s, initiated a magazine-style programme at Chelsea, the first club to change the way football communicated with its fans. Sewell’s trail-blazing publication was soon copied by all and […]

International ownership – get used to it

IT IS a reasonable assumption that the Premier League’s power has been enhanced by an influx of overseas investment over the past 20 years. English domestic football has come a long way from the old days of butchers, bakers and candlestick makers to become the toy of tycoons, money sourced from oil,  privatisation initiatives, opportunism and […]